Hillary Reader and Maree Swanson

Posted on October 27th, 2010 in not yet categorised by Kirsty

Hillary was working with Reaction Grid for Hosptiaity Training.
Studemts were able to make their avatars and clothe them and that worked fine, but when they started to go online into Reaction Grid the network would often crash. More time spent working with students who were not engaged, so they divided the class into those who were interested, and those who weren’t. Students staying in the online section were assigned spaces such as rooms, restaurants, front office and so on. Many of the students had not actually been into real life hotels (beyond restaurants etc) before so that was also a learning curve as they started to build their spaces.
Teacher issues were not having a clear enough idea about what the students would be doing in the world, how they would assess what was being done, and not enough preparation. Hillary felt she was spending far too much time putting out fires rather than making the most of the opportunity. Network issues were a major factor in disengaging students especially at the beginning.

Chris (student) “it was quite annoying as it would be so much easier to build in another environment and bring it in to SL using tools you already had.”

Maree Swanson (Virtually Here) presentation.
Networking in virtual worlds is one aspect which is an added bonus of her project. Maree gave a brief introduction to her project. A major reason for adding virtual worlds to her existing blended online program for Certificate 2 in Hospitality was enriching the social presence for her learners.
Maree showed us a video from EducationAU about virtual worlds and gaming. “Immersive Learning: it’s game on”
students were scattered around the state with Yr 11-12 students based in District High Schools, with a few Yr 10 students enrolled in Cert 1 units also.
Practicalities: informed parent consent, networking access, cyber safety education, updating of policies.
Students were in SL/RG for 90 mins per week for 10 weeks including getting started, role plays and assessment. Invited two hospitality experts to come as guest speakers who mainly joined in via Skype although one did already have an avatar.
Pods for reflection / discussion, tool purchased from Terra Incognito (UQ).
Would not be able to determine full competency from this activity, but there are a myriad of different ways in which evidence can be gathered from SL, and it is part of a broader blended learning delivery of the units.

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